Last week prior to the Islanders 5-3 over the Rangers at the Garden, we asked for your questions about the team. We got over 100 passionate and frustrated responses and will answer as many as we can over the next two days. In no particular order, here we go...Frank: Why doesn't Capuano try to jump start Josh Bailey by putting on the top line with JT ( drop Vanek to the second line to even out the lines better). Also Bailey was playing his best when he was killing penalties last year, he's not utilized enough with the skills that he has.Bailey on the first line would be an interesting idea, though I don’t know how much I like the idea of Vanek on the second line with Grabs and Nielsen. Think he’s fitting well on that first line with JT and Okposo.Right now, I wouldn't want to mess with the chemistry Okposo and Tavares have, so I'd like to leave them together. Dropping Vanek down to the second could be a good way to create secondary scoring, and I like it, I just don't see them doing it. I believe Snow traded for him to pair him with Tavares, so that's why he'll stay on the top line.Dallas: Do you think they trade VANEK if they are out of it at trade deadline and what would they get for him? Also do they ship Amac too? And where does Nabokov fit at the deadline?If the Isles are out of it, I think Vanek would be traded at the deadline for the right price. My gut tells me Snow would obviously like to still try to re-sign him, but if he gets a good offer at the deadline – something with substance – then he’d be open to moving him. I think the same would go for Nabokov. A-Mac I’m not 100% sure that they’d be as willing to move him.If they're out of it at the deadline, they have to move Vanek. You can't risk losing Moulson and two early round picks for nothing. Of course, it goes without saying that they should also offer Vanek a contract of some kind. It seems pretty clear that the decision was made to either spend money on Moulson or Vanek, not both.Yes, send AMac packing as well. Any contender close to the cap can add his minuscule cap hit easily and I think he is overvalued around the league. I'm an advanced stats person when it come to judging defense and the stats -- along with a lot of people's observations -- have not been good for him this year. All that said, young kids will need to step up to fill the hole next year (Reinhart) and a top-four defender is still on the free agent need list.Nabokov shouldn't been moved. If they're out of it, give Poulin more starts, certainly. But I don't know that there's enough value there to justify selling out the Isles weakest position.Mitch: Coming off our first playoff series in years, do you think Garth Snow misjudged this team and figured bring virtually the same team back with another year together we would take the next step when it was obvious we needed a goalie, 1 D-men and a scorer, your thoughtsI think Snow and a lot of other people misjudged this team after the run they had. I think that has become pretty evident since the start of the season. The Isles had nice run late in the season and put up a hell of a fight in the playoff, but you’re right goaltending and defense were positions that needed upgrades. Snow stood pat and it hurt the team. Not for nothing too, I think Snow still doesn’t completely have the budget to spend what he needs to spend to help the team.Yes, a lot of people inside and outside of the team misjudged what happened last year. That includes myself, who picked the Islanders to finish third or fourth in the division this year (still time, obviously).The defense has not been as good as last year, partially due to injuries. The Visnovsky injury has been devastating. They could have gotten away without Streit but not both.The lack of an upgrade at goaltender is inexcusable, in my opinion. Nabokov was bad for long stretches last year (also, good for stretches). They clearly didn't believe in Poulin, not taking the reigns off him until Nabokov got hurt. Ben Bishop, Anton Khudobin, Jon Bernier, there were options out there. Given that the Sabres are retaining salary in the Vanek trade I think there's a budget issue here. With Hiller and Miller set to hit the market as well as Scrivens the Islanders need to spend money on a goalie next summer. Hopefully the budget allows it...Matt: What is garth snow doing about the defense of this team is so horrible?Any news about any rumors of wang giving getting the team new ownership?Also is the team going get a new coach and a new GM?We’ve seen reports that Snow is trying to make some sort of deal to help his team, but he has had no takers. Not much you can do if you can’t get the right deal done and, as we’ve seen in the past, Snow doesn’t just take any deal.As for ownership rumors, I haven’t heard any nor do I think any are true. Those are usually good for a laugh, but I don’t think Wang is selling the team at the present moment. And no I don’t think there will be changes at the coaching and GM positions right now. Capuano may be the likeliest to be let go, but Snow’s job is pretty secure.The Islanders have made their bed on defense and it is hard to trade for a top-four defender during the year. Plus, the Islanders aren't the only team that would like a defender. Trading for one is easier said than done. They traded for Cal Clutterbuck and Thomas Vanek. So here we are.Everything I've ever been told from those inside and around the organization (and this goes back a number of years, too) is that Charles Wang enjoys owning the Islanders. And remember, when digesting new rumors, always check the source. How many times was Patty L supposed to buy the team?It's amazing, to me anyway, that the coach survived the 10-game losing streak. As far as the GM, I have to default to the guy who would know this sort of thing.http://twitter.com/ChrisBottaNHL/status/408075759409176576Mike B: Is there anyway the Isles can have the first round pick protected if they do terrible (ie. MLB protecting first pick of 10 worst teams) and wind up in the bottom 5 of the league?The Islanders can defer sending their first round pick to Buffalo until 2015 if it’s a top 10 pick.Chris T: Its been reported that Charles Wang was losing about 20 million per year on the team before Tom Suozzi amended the lease for the coliseum, where does Wang stand now with his loses?No idea if he is still losing as much as he was then, but I doubt the Tom Suozzi deal helped that much. It is still not even close to the sweet heart deals the Rangers or Knicks or Mets or Yankees have with NYC.The Islanders certainly don't get the tax break that Madison Square Garden does (never forget!) but this is a pretty interesting question and one that is worth revisiting. That $20 million figure that is the only figure anyone really knows about team finances and it comes from a 2009 Newsday article where Wang expressed his frustrations with not being able to get the Lighthouse Project or other arena deal passed.The Islanders now run full operations of the building and other events. They get better cuts of revenue streams than prior to Suzzoi's "sweet heart" deal. No one really knows how much better or if that means a profit or loss, but again, it's certainly no MSG deal.What we do know is that things should be better in Brooklyn where the Islanders will receive a set payment from Barclays Center. In return, BC receives the vast majority of the team's revenue streams.Joe A: Is it safe to assume that they aren't making a coaching change until they move to Brooklyn? How can they allow this team to make the same mistakes year after year, game after game without any consequences???I don’t think it will take that long. If the Isles feel a coaching change needs to be made it will likely come during the offseason. I don’t think they’d wait another two seasons to make a coaching change.I'm honestly not sure anymore. Capuano made it through the last rough patch and the media was told repeatedly that Snow had confidence in him and wanted to make a trade to help the situation. I guess that's what the status is until further notice. The Islanders play 16 games in 31 days in January, so it would be tough to implement a new coach and/or system then. I imagine Capuano at least finishes the season. If anything, February Olympic Break is a good time to make a change.Ronnie: There seems to be a major disconnect between those who cover the team (bloggers, journalists, etc.) and the fans that they should be catering to. Can you please address it? Based on comments on this site, the team's social media accounts, and replies to journalists on Twitter, there is a significant amount of anger that has been built up amongst Isles fans. There seems to be more focus from these angry fans about why those who cover the team aren't doing more to criticize those in charge of running/owning the team more so than anger with those people actually in charge. It's almost as if Isles fans feel voiceless and are looking for a way to breakthrough.This is a very interesting question because, like you, I see the anger that the fans have been directing at the people who cover this team too. I think the disconnect stems from the fact that the fans want to fire and brimstone. And columns filled with why Wang is horrible, why this team stinks, why Snow is the worst GM and why Capuano is a terrible coach. But that isn’t how journalism works or what a reporters job is. It is their job is to cover the team without bias by reporting the facts.I think the fans expect the people who cover this team to be fans first and just go off on the team, but that’s not how it’s done. This isn’t an Islander only thing either. Dan Shaughnessy wrote an interesting column about this subject for the Boston Globe. It just seems to be more intense here since the team has been struggling and they haven’t seen much success in quite a while.Bloggers obviously have a bit of a different role depending on whom they write for, but again having so much passion about a team can cloud your ability to see things clearly. It’s the job of the people who cover the team to be able to do that.That’s where I think the disconnect may come in.I'm really glad this question was asked since it's come to the forefront on Twitter recently and I think it's a good one to end on for today because this may be a long response, as Christian's was. I'm going to divide my response into a few sections, because it's actually a pretty nuanced subject. It's not as simple as anyone (media, bloggers, twitterers, fans) just typing "EFF YOU" and voicing frustration every time the team loses. Depending on your particular spot in the parenthesis above, you will handle things differently.Media: So, I know a lot of people got on Arthur Staple for not criticizing the team on Twitter the other night. But if you remember, Arthur wasn't hopping all aboard the Islanders Express last season when the team was playing well, either. His job is to ask questions to players and coaches, report those answers and report observations of the games and practices. This tweet explains it, basically:https://twitter.com/StapeNewsday/status/413867202534584320Folks like James Mirtle, Chris Botta and Larry Brooks, who are all more critical of the team, are on the columnist/analyst side of things. They get paid to write their opinions and don't ask questions at practices or tweet game observations (Mirtle does for the Leafs, I believe, but the others do not). They get paid to answer questions like 'why is this happening', 'what can be done to fix it' and 'who is to blame?'So when directing ire at a particular person in the mainstream media (mainstream meaning more or less "person who covers hockey/sports on a full-time basis") you have to remember whose editor is asking for columns and #HOTTAKES and whose editor is asking for news articles.It's funny too, because Mirtle has been hard on the Isles many times and then he gets venom on Twitter for being critical. Go figure.Bloggers: Bloggers are in a bit different category. We're all fans at the end of the day although we all portray ourselves as such to very different degrees. So to say that we all have orange and blue glasses on is probably 100% accurate. We all also have day jobs or school or in some cases (mine) both. So the amount that each individual can write is limited and we have to pick and choose between stories. But anyway... These are my thoughts, so they're not gospel but it's what I've gathered from blogging for the last 7+ years.Bloggers, if they do it respectfully, are certainly able to criticize the team. Bloggers are usually more columnists, from the example above. We are usually not at practice, usually not at the games, usually expressing opinions. BUT! The Islanders are a progressive organization and allow us to go to practices and go to games and bring you quotes and stories that we otherwise could not. So we're also reporters, like Staple, but on a much smaller scale. So there's a bit of a line to walk since we can wear both hats.We try to have it both ways; have our cake and eat it, too. And there's certainly demand for that. I mean, the second this blog stopped reporting from practice every day a couple years ago due to, uh, circumstances people knocked us for not getting the same interesting stories from the Coliseum and locker room. So, we know there's a desire for that. We also know there's a desire for opinions both good and bad. I think we certainly share those. It's a balancing act. The day we write "Charles Wang is a [pick an expletive to put here]" in a headline will be the last day we are able to have it both ways. That said, we are still able to debate the merits of coaches, players, trades and more. We're able to say the coach or GM is doing a bad job. I think a lot of times people expect us to go nuclear and expecting us to go nuclear is unfair.BUT! All of that said, I do understand that people want to see to some extent a reflection of the frustration and anger that they are experiencing. AND! I do think that Islanders bloggers have been overly positive and overly non-critical. Recently. In general.I'm on Twitter a lot reading everything. I'm on Twitter too much, honestly. But I think for the last two months, or however long that stretch without a regulation win lasted, there were a lot of nights on Twitter where the Isles were down 3-0 or blew a third period lead and the reaction from bloggers was "it's a long season!" " well they played really hard, you guys!" "it's not [player/coach/GM's] fault!" when, in all reality, the team was in the middle of a bad losing streak and there's really no way to sugar coat that the team has lost five in a row and just got blasted 5-0 at home by Detroit.The internet has also created this weird YOU vs. ME and BLACK vs. WHITE dynamic with everything it touches. Excuse me as this discussion gets a little more conceptual and bigger picture.You're either DEMOCRAT or REPUBLICAN, says the internet. You either LOVE or HATE Fox News, the internet tells you. You either LOVE advanced stats and think they are gospel or you HATE advanced stats because you see and judge with your eyes, they say on the internet. You are either drinking Islanders KOOL AID or you're a REAL FAN who lets the hate flow, they say on Islanders discussion boards and comment sections. "What does the Fox say?" is either the BEST SONG EVER OH MY GAWD or it's the STUPIDEST CRAP EVER, the internet says.Life, and the internet, should not be so black and white. Life and the internet are in fact not black and white! There are good things, bad things and things in between. The internet is the place where sarcasm and hyberbole are king and compromise is non-existent. We watch the "best video ever" and share pictures of the "cutest cat in history." Who has ever won a twitter debate or argument? Literally no one. People are wrong, people are right and there are people who were a little bit of both.A lot of days, I think the black and white butt heads and cause a rift and I think it's done that in Islanders Country. There's a "nuke the whole place" tribe and for lack of a better description, I guess, a Kool Aid tribe. It's divisive and serves little purpose except to further arguments and find the NEXT THING to get upset about. But in the end we're all really interested in the same scenario playing out, I think.Whew. Sorry if that got too long and ranty.So in short; pick your media targets of hate appropriately, bloggers have a tough rope to walk but, I agree, have been too positive this season, and the internet creates a weird good or bad and no in-between dynamic that kinda sucks.
Tags: Islanders, Kevin Schultz

Mar 24, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) and goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) celebrate a shootout win against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the PPG PAINTS Arena. The Islanders won 4-3 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)
Mar 24, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) and goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) celebrate a shootout win against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the PPG PAINTS Arena. The Islanders won 4-3 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)

The Islanders try and keep their playoff hopes alive as they take on the Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center on Thursday night at 7 p.m.

According to STATS:

  • The Islanders are 8-3-1 over their last 12 road games. Since February 21, the Rangers (18) are the only team in the NHL with more points earned on the road than the Islanders (17).
  • The Flyers fired 35 shots in Tuesday's 3-2 shootout win over the Senators. Philadelphia (26) trails only Pittsburgh (36) and Boston (33) for the most games with 35+ shots this season.
Tags: Josh Bailey
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Brian Compton and Mike Carver are not happy after two dreadful losses to the Bruins and Predators. The guys discuss the team's lack of energy, their inability to win at home, and the absence of Ryan Pulock. Later, Dan Rosen of NHL.com calls in to talk about the failing power play and Garth Snow's decision-making since the end of last season. 

Click below to listen!

Tags: Ryan Pulock
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New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) against the Calgary Flames during the first period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) against the Calgary Flames during the first period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

Thomas Greiss will start in goal tonight, Doug Weight told reporters Thursday morning.

Johnny Boychuk will be in the lineup for Thomas Hickey.

Boychuk has not played since suffering a lower body injury on March 3.

Tags: Johnny Boychuk, Thomas Greiss, Thomas Hickey
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General view of Barclays Center (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
General view of Barclays Center (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

The Islanders and forward Tanner Fritz have agreed to a two-way contract that will begin next season, the team announced.

In his first full professional season, Fritz, 25, has 19 goals and 21 assists in 61 games for the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the AHL. 

Fritz has totaled 52 points in 80 AHL games thus far. 

 


Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight talks to forward Andrew Ladd (16) during the time out against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight talks to forward Andrew Ladd (16) during the time out against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

With the Islanders in desperate need of points, head coach Doug Weight is trying his best to help his club get off to faster starts during the last seven games of the season.

"You have to want it - want to come out and put your opponent on their heels," Weight said. "Our first periods too many times lately have just been touchy-feely, letting all our opponents think they can hang around and get going on us. You can't do that this time of year."

The Isles are 3-5-1 since March 11 and have lost consecutive games to fall four points behind the Bruins for the final playoff spot.

The Islanders visit the Flyers on Thursday night followed by a matchup at home with the Devils on Friday.

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 (Perry Nelson (USA Today))
(Perry Nelson (USA Today))

Islanders F Josh Ho-Sang said he never expected to be up with the team this season.

"If you asked me if I thought I would be in the NHL, not a chance," Ho-Sang told the NY Post on Tuesday. "A few months ago, I was like, 'What am I doing?' Then I started playing better. For me, it's been a crazy year."

Ho-Sang, 21, was called up for his NHL debut earlier this month and has notched three goals and five assists in 14 games.

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GEICO SportsNite: Islanders 00:00:47
Islanders interim coach Doug Weight reflects on his team's position as they close in on the playoffs.

 (AP)
(AP)

The Islanders' 3-1 loss to the Nashville Predators on Monday night may be a blow too big to overcome in their late push to the playoffs.

The Isles came out flat, being outshot 22-to-15 through two periods, and fell behind into a 2-0 hole. Josh Bailey's second period goal got them closer, but Ryan Johansen scored into an empty net with 21 seconds left to seal the victory for Nashville.

"We've been a little too late to the party on a consistent basis," Doug Weight said of the team's sluggish starts of late. "It didn't bite us against the Rangers, but it did the last couple games."

Tags: Josh Bailey, Ryan Pulock, Thomas Greiss
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The Islanders have signed D Jake Bischoff to a two-year, entry-level contract, the team announced Tuesday.

The 22-year-old Bischoff, who was the alternate captain for the University of Minnesota the last two seasons, had five goals and 27 assists in 38 games this season.

He had 17 goals and 51 assists during his four-year career with Minnesota.

The Islanders also signed F Matt Gaudreaureports Arthur Staple of Newsday...

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The Islanders lost to the Predators on Monday night and with 82 points, trail the Bruins by two points for the second and final Wild Cadrd spot in the Eastern Conference.

New York also trails the Lightning, who have 83 points. The Isles, Bruins, and Lightning all have seven games remaining.

While they've struggled, going 4-5-1 over their last 10 games, the Islanders aren't using fatigue as an excuse.

Tags: John Tavares, Josh Bailey, Ryan Strome
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New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss stops a puck in front of Nashville Predators center Colin Wilson during the first period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss stops a puck in front of Nashville Predators center Colin Wilson during the first period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

The New York Islanders lost to the Nashville Predators, 3-1, Monday at Barclays Center. >> Read more


First period:

  • 10:17 NAS Kevin Fiala; Assists: Calle Jarnkrok, Anthony Bitetto

Second period:

  • 3:15 NAS Viktor Arvidssonl Assists: Filip Forsberg, Mattias Ekholm
  • 17:20 NYI Josh Bailey; Assist: Nick Leddy

Third period:

  • 19:39 NAS Ryan Johansen (ENG); Assist: Ryan Ellis
Tags: Josh Bailey, Nashville Predators, Nick Leddy
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New York Islanders center John Tavares takes the ice for warm-ups against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the PPG PAINTS Arena. (Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Islanders center John Tavares takes the ice for warm-ups against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the PPG PAINTS Arena. (Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports Images)

The New York Islanders host the Nashville Predators at Barclays Center on Monday at 7 p.m. ET.

According to STATS:

  • The Islanders are 6-1-0-1 over their last eight home games against the Predators. Nashville's last win on the road against the Islanders came January 16, 2012.
Tags: John Tavares, Nashville Predators
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The Islanders have signed F John Stevens to a two-year, entry-level contract, the team announced Monday.

Stevens, 22, was the captain for Norheastern University this season, notching five goals and 23 assists in 25 games. 

He had 26 goals and 80 assists in 138 games during his four-year career with Northeastern.

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New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) during the first period against the Boston Bruins at Barclays Center. (Anthony Gruppuso)
New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) during the first period against the Boston Bruins at Barclays Center. (Anthony Gruppuso)

Thomas Greiss will start in goal for the Islanders tonight as they take on the Predators, Doug Weight told reporters Monday morning.

Alan Quine will be in the lineup for Shane Prince.

Thomas Hickey will be in the lineup for Scott Mayfield.

Tags: Alain Quine, Shane Prince, Thomas Greiss, Thomas Hickey
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Mar 25, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang (66) is challenged by Boston Bruins defenseman Colin Miller (6) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
		 (Anthony Gruppuso)
Mar 25, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang (66) is challenged by Boston Bruins defenseman Colin Miller (6) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports (Anthony Gruppuso)

Riley Nash's two goals were all the Boston Bruins needed to beat the Islanders on Saturday night at The Barclays Center.  >> Read more


 

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 (Winslow Townson)
(Winslow Townson)

The Islanders continue their playoff push as they face the Bruins at Barclays Center tonight at 7 p.m. ET.

According to STATS:

  • The Bruins lost to the Lightning, 6-3, on Thursday in Boston, their fourth consecutive loss following a string of four straight wins. They allowed a combined seven goals in those four wins, but have allowed 20 goals over their four losses.
  • The Islanders have won both meetings between the teams this season -- 4-2 on December 20, and 4-0 on January 16, both in Boston. Prior to this year, the Bruins had won five straight against the Islanders, include a three-game season sweep last year.
  • David Pastrnak scored against Tampa Bay on Thursday, giving him 32 goals and 32 assists this season, both well above his prior career highs. Pastrnak had never registered more than 27 points in his two prior seasons in the league.

 

Tags: Anders Lee, John Tavares
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The Bruins' David Pastrnak controls the puck against the Islanders Calvin de Haan during a game last season. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)
The Bruins' David Pastrnak controls the puck against the Islanders Calvin de Haan during a game last season. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

Two teams vying for the same thing but going in opposite directions will square off in one of the biggest games of the NHL season Saturday night when the New York Islanders host the Boston Bruins at Barclays Center.

The Islanders and Bruins enter Saturday tied for the second and final wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference. New York created the deadlock Friday night when it outlasted the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3 in a shootout.

It was the second straight win over a playoff-bound foe by the Islanders, who were three points out of the second wild card entering Wednesday's 3-2 win over the New York Rangers.

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New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

The New York Islanders walked into Pittsburgh and, facing a team with some key injuries, boarded a plane afterward with two points in their pockets and control of the final Eastern conference playoff spot.

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New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save against the Washington Capitals during the first period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner)
New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save against the Washington Capitals during the first period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner)

After a 4-3 shootout win over Pittsburgh on Friday night, the Islanders now hold the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference. 

Riding goals from John Tavares and Anthony Beauvillier in the shootout, the Islanders racked up their 18th win since Doug Weight took over as interim coach 31 games ago. 

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The Islanders lost Ryan Strome to a broken wrist, so what impact will it have on their playoff chances? SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano discuss...

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

Barring a deep playoff run, Ryan Strome's 2016-17 season is over. So, Andy: What does this mean for the Islanders forward corps, and how will this impact them going down the stretch?

Tags: Ryan Strome, Andy Graziano, Brian Erni
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New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save against the Washington Capitals during the first period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner)
New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save against the Washington Capitals during the first period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner)

Jaroslav Halak will get his first start in goal since Dec. 29 when the Islanders take on the Penguins tonight, Doug Weight told reporters Friday morning.

Halak was recalled from Bridgeport on Thursday. In 25 games with the Sound Tigers, the 31-year old goaltender went 17-7-1 with a 2.15 GA and .925 save percentage.

Alan Quine will be in the lineup for the injured Ryan Strome, who broke his wrist during Wednesday's 3-2 win over the Rangers.

Tags: Alain Quine, Jaroslav Halak, Ryan Strome
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 (James Guillory)
(James Guillory)

Ryan Strome does not need surgery for his broken wrist, and is expected to miss three-to-six weeks, interim head coach Doug Weight told reporters on Friday.

Strome left Wednesday night's win against the Rangers late in the second period after suffering the injury while taking a hit from Brady Sjkei along the boards.

He has 13 goals and 17 assists in 69 games this season.

 

Tags: Ryan Strome
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 (Jerome Miron)
(Jerome Miron)

Josh Ho-Sang is sure to draw some fan ire on Friday when the Isles hit the ice in Pittsburgh, but as far as Mario Lemieux is concerned, he's fine with the number Ho-Sang wears on his back.

"I'm fine with it," Lemieux said Thursday through a Penguins spokesperson when asked about Ho-Sang wearing number 66. "It's just a number. Number 4 and number 9 were worn by great players (Bobby Orr and Gordie Howe, respectively), and they are not retired forever. Players can choose whatever number they want."

Ho-Sang, who has said that he chose 66 to honor Lemieux, expanded on his reasoning to Joe Starkey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette by making mention of a story that surfaced earlier in the week. Lemieux receiving a letter from six-year-old Darran Dunlap, daughter of Pittsburgh-area radio host Colin Dunlap. Darran was diagnosed with leukemia this past November, and Lemieux, a cancer survivor himself, sent the youngster a letter back with words of encouragement and a signed puck...

 

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 (Eric Bolte)
(Eric Bolte)

Thomas Greiss stopped 34 of 36 shots as the Islanders beat the Rangers, 3-2, at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night.

Greiss, 31, has gone 25-16 this season while posting a 2.67 GAA and .914 save percentage.

Prior to Wednesday night, he had allowed three goals or more in three of his last four games.

Tags: Thomas Greiss
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Anders Lee had a goal and assist while getting 17:51 of ice time as the Islanders beat the Rangers, 3-2, at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night.

"I just try to create havoc in front and make those small plays," Lee said after the game, according to the New York Times. "For us, this is playoff hockey. There's no taking any game for granted. We have to get two points every night."

Lee, 26, has 27 goals and 17 assists in 71 games this season -- both career-highs.

Tags: Anders Lee, John Tavares, Josh Bailey
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New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. (Brace Hemmelgarn/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. (Brace Hemmelgarn/USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders have recalled goaltender Jaroslav Halak on loan from Bridgeport, the team announced Thursday.

Interim head coach Doug Weight told Newsday's Steven Marcus on Monday that the team was considering recalling Halak.

"There's a lot of talk about it," Weight said. "He's played really well, he's had a great attitude. We'll see what transpires here in the next couple of days."

The Islanders have used Thomas Greiss and J.F. Berube in net since Halak cleared waivers and was assigned to the AHL in late December.

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, Thomas Greiss
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GEICO SportsNite: NYI@NYR 00:01:04
Alain Vigneault, Ryan McDonagh and John Tavares break down the game between the crosstown rivals as the Islanders defeated the Rangers, 3-2.

The Islanders scored two goals in the third period to defeat the Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night, 3-2.  >> Read more

First Period

  • 2:46 NYR Mats Zuccarello (Power Play); Assists: Mika Zibanejad, Derek Stepan

Second Period

  • 3:40 NYI Anders Lee; Assists: Anthony Beauviller, Nick Leddy
  • 6:36 NYR Rick Nash; Assists: Oscar Lindberg, Nick Holden

Third Period

  • 5:01 NYI Nikolay Kulemin (Power Play); Assists: Anthony Beavuillier, Joshua Ho-Sang
  • 12:38 NYI Andrew Ladd (Power Play); Assists: Anders Lee, John Tavares
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 (Sergei Belski)
(Sergei Belski)

The Islanders could decide to trade captain John Tavares if they haven't made progress on a long-term extension by a certain date, TSN's Darren Dreger speculates.

Tavares has stated on numerous occasions how much he enjoys playing for the Islanders, but has not said he plans to stay long-term.

He will enter the final year of his six-year deal next season, with a cap hit of $5.5 million.

Tags: John Tavares
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New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) guards his net during the warmup period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) guards his net during the warmup period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

Thomas Greiss will start in goal for the Islanders tonight against the Rangers, Doug Weight told reporters Wednesday morning.

Thomas Hickey will be in the lineup for Dennis Seidenberg.

The Islanders will use the same forwards as Saturday's 3-2 overtime loss against the Blue Jackets.

Tags: Thomas Greiss, Thomas Hickey
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 (Kim Klement)
(Kim Klement)

Josh Bailey (illness) missed practice on Tuesday, with interim head coach Doug Weight saying Bailey should be fine for Wednesday night's game against the Rangers.

Weight added that the lines would remain the same.

Bailey, 27, has 12 goals and 37 assists in 71 games this season, but has failed to notch a goal or assist over his last five games.

Tags: Andrew Ladd, Calvin De Haan, Josh Bailey, Ryan Pulock
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Brian Compton and Mike Carver look back at a rough week after tough losses to Columbus and Winnipeg. The guys discuss the team's lack of pride, the struggling goaltending, and Garth Snow's decision to keep Ryan Pulock in Bridgeport. Later, Liam McHugh of NBC Sports calls in to give his thoughts on the playoff race, the Isles-Rangers rivalry, and Mike Milbury. 

Click below to listen!

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Mar 18, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders center center John Tavares (91) is congratulated after scoring a goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets during the third period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 18, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders center center John Tavares (91) is congratulated after scoring a goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets during the third period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV: 

Down to the final 11 games of the 2016-17 regular season, through all the inconsistency of the past couple of weeks, the New York Islanders find themselves very much in the hunt for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot, trailing the Toronto Maple Leafs by one point, having played one more game.

It's been the scoreboard, perhaps, more than the Islanders that have kept them alive, but at this point, there are no apologies for that, just further opportunities for them to right the wrongs that have been regularly occurring in their defensive zone.

  • Yesterday, New York lost a one-goal overtime game against one of the best teams in the league, a team fighting for first place overall in the entire league. They out-attempted the Blue Jackets, 56-54, despite being outshot 38-22. Not a horrible performance and a much-needed point, although the three goals they allowed were all a result of the usual defensive breakdowns that have become too frequent at this stage.
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The Islanders return to Barclays Center to take on the Ducks Sunday night. (Brad Penner)
The Islanders return to Barclays Center to take on the Ducks Sunday night. (Brad Penner)

The Islanders and the Barclays Center are negotiating a possible temporary agreement that would not force the team out of the stadium after two years, Nick Kypreos said on Sportsnet's Hockey Night.

It was previously reported that the Barclays Center wanted the Islanders out after the 2018-2019 season because the venue would profit more by hosting different events.

Nassau County executive Ed Mangana had met with Islanders owner Jonathan Ledecky on Nov. 17 in order to discuss a return to Nassau Coliseum, according to Newsday.

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Mar 18, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets right wing Josh Anderson (34) is congratulated after scoring a goal as New York Islanders defenseman Dennis Seidenberg (4) skates away during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 18, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets right wing Josh Anderson (34) is congratulated after scoring a goal as New York Islanders defenseman Dennis Seidenberg (4) skates away during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

First Period 

  • 14:18 NYI Travis Hamonic; Assists: Jason Chimera, Anthony Beauvillier

Second Period 

  • 1:00 CBJ Oliver Bjorkstrand
  • 15:48 CBJ Josh Anderson; Assists: Nick Foligno, Zach Werenski

Third Period 

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Mar 16, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Winnipeg Jets defenseman Ben Chiarot (7) battle New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang (66) during second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 16, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Winnipeg Jets defenseman Ben Chiarot (7) battle New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang (66) during second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

The Islanders will host the Blue Jackets in a Saturday afternoon matinee at Barclays Center. 

According to STATS:

  • The Blue Jackets beat the Florida Panthers on Thursday, 2-1. It was Columbus' second consecutive win and its fifth in its last six games (5-1-0).
  • The Islanders lost, 4-2, on Thursday versus Winnipeg. New York has now lost three of its last four games (1-3-0)
  • This is the fourth and final meeting this season between the Blue Jackets and Islanders. The home team has won the first three matchups, all in regulation. Columbus won at home 6-2 on December 10 and 7-0 on February 25, while the Islanders won on home ice 4-2 on January 24.
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The Islanders' Thomas Hickey, left, and center John Tavares show their frustration during Thursday's home loss to Winnipeg. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
The Islanders' Thomas Hickey, left, and center John Tavares show their frustration during Thursday's home loss to Winnipeg. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)

The Isles are just one point out of the final Wild Card with 13 games to go. So what does the team need to do to reach the playoffs? Brian Erni and Andy Graziano discuss...

Brian Erni, SNY.TV:  Andy, with their loss to the Jets on Thursday, the Islanders suffered a major setback in their quest for the second Wild Card. So what does this team need to do to make sure they qualify for their third straight postseason?

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV:  Well, I'd say the change has to begin with their defensive coverage, which has been manically up-and-down for a couple of weeks now. Travis Hamonic has not been good since his return for injury, and the forwards look too lackadaisical in their back-checking.

Tags: Shane Prince, Andy Graziano, Brian Erni
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 (Geoff Burke)
(Geoff Burke)

The Islanders have activated Casey Cizikas  from the injured reserve list. Cizikas, who reportedly broke his hand against Detroit last month, is questionable for Saturday's game against Columbus.

Tags: Cal Clutterbuck, Casey Cizikas, Shane Prince
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New York Islanders defenseman Travis Hamonic (3) works out prior to game two of the second round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Amalie Arena. (Kim Klement)
New York Islanders defenseman Travis Hamonic (3) works out prior to game two of the second round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Amalie Arena. (Kim Klement)

Since making his Islanders debut in 2010-11, Travis Hamonic's career has been marked by injuries and subpar defensive play, culminating with the 2016-17 season, which has quickly spiraled into one that Hamonic would like to forget. 

With 13 points, Hamonic has the lowest point total of his career, not including the 48-game lockout shortened season of 2012-13. He has failed to play a full season since that year, only appearing in 81 percent of all scheduled contests.

He has also been very inconsistent in his own end. Hamonic was a -8 in that lockout year and -5 last year, going +27 over the other four years of his career.

Tags: Nick Leddy, Thomas Greiss, Thomas Hickey, Travis Hamonic
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New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

For the second time in three games, the Islanders came out and started well but could not sustain momentum for long as they dropped a 4-2 decision to the Jets at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

The first eight minutes were dominated by New York, who were all over Connor Hellebuyck. Adam Pelech scored at the 38-second mark, but the good vibes did not last longer than that. Winnipeg took advantage of shoddy defending and mental breakdowns to build a 4-1 lead they would not relinquish.

"We had 4 or 5 opportunities to make it 2-0, the power play had chances. We looked like a tired team, mentally. We looked like a team that practiced twice in the last 25 days. Certainly starts building into your game. You can watch video all you want, you need to work on things on the ice", interim head coach Doug Weight said postgame.

Tags: John Tavares
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Mar 16, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Adam Pelech (50) and Winnipeg Jets center Mathieu Perreault (85) battle for the puck during second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Mar 16, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Adam Pelech (50) and Winnipeg Jets center Mathieu Perreault (85) battle for the puck during second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Bryan Little tallied twice for the Jets who defeated the Islanders, 4-2, on Thursday night at Barclays Center. >> Read more


First period:

  • 0:38 NYI Adam Pelech; Assists: John TavaresNick Leddy
  • 9:22 WPG Bryan Little; Assists: Nikolaj Ehiers, Ben Chiarot
  • 18:35 WPG Bryan Little (power play); Assists: Nic Petan, Nikolaj Ehiers

Second period:

  • 3:24 WPG Matthieu Perrault; Assists: Blake Wheeler, Mark Scheifele
  • 11:31 WPG Adam Lowry; Assists: Joel Armia, Mark Stuart

Third period:

  • 1:02 NYI Anders Lee
Tags: Anders Lee, John Tavares, Nick Leddy
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Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders forward John Tavares (91) celebrates his game winning overtime goal with his teammates against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Islanders defeated the Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders forward John Tavares (91) celebrates his game winning overtime goal with his teammates against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Islanders defeated the Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

The Islanders continue their playoff push as they face the Jets at Barclays Center tonight at 7 p.m. ET.

According to STATS:

  • The Islanders were able to earn a split in their home-and-home with the Hurricanes by winning in overtime, 3-2, on Tuesday night in Carolina. It was a year to the day since the last time New York won after allowing the game's first two goals, March 14, 2016 against the Panthers.
  • The Jets dropped their fourth in a row with a 5-4 overtime loss at the Predators on Monday. Winnipeg has killed off just seven of 13 shorthanded chances over its last three games (53.8 percent), allowing at least one power-play goal in all three.
  • New York took the first meeting from Winnipeg this season, 6-2, on New Year's Eve. It was the Islanders' fourth straight win over the Jets, their longest winning streak against the franchise since another four-game run from January 29, 2009 -- January 2, 2010.
Tags: Anders Lee, John Tavares
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New York Islanders goaltender Thomas Greiss (1) makes a save during warmup against the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place. (Perry Nelson)
New York Islanders goaltender Thomas Greiss (1) makes a save during warmup against the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place. (Perry Nelson)

Thomas Greiss will start in goal for the Islanders tonight against the Jets, Doug Weight told reporters Thursday morning.

Brock Nelson will be in the lineup for Anthony Beauvillier.

The Islanders will use the same defensemen as Tuesday's 3-2 win over Carolina.

Tags: Brock Nelson, Thomas Greiss
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Brian Compton and Mike Carver breathe a big sigh of relief after Tuesday night's comeback victory over Carolina. They discuss Josh Ho-Sang's emergence and Thomas Greiss' bounce back performance. Later, the guys chat with Mike Fornabio of the Connecticut Post about Jaroslav HalakRyan PulockMichael Dal Colle, and Devon Toews.

Click below to listen!

 

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, Ryan Pulock, Thomas Greiss
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New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) during the first period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) during the first period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

Thomas Greiss may have been off in relief of J-F Berube on Monday night, but he was eager to redeem himself on Tuesday against the Hurricanes.

"Every time you get lit up or you don't have the best game, you want to get back out there right away," Greiss said of his bounce back performance, which saw the Isles netminder stop 30 of Carolina's 32 shots.

Greiss, who gave up two goals including one on a breakway by Elias Lindholm, held Carolina at bay after they went up by two, as he made a big sprawling save on Derek Ryan and a highlight reel lounging arm save on Lucas Wallmark both midway through the second.

Tags: Thomas Greiss
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New York Islanders left wing Jason Chimera (25) skates during the warmup period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders left wing Jason Chimera (25) skates during the warmup period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

Jason Chimera may have started his Islanders career slowly, but the 37-year-old is on pace to have another remarkable NHL season.

Just 25 seconds after Josh Ho-Sang had pulled the Isles within one, Chimera wound the puck around from the blue line and all the way to Cam Ward, who kicked the puck toward the boards. Cal Clutterbuck crashed to prevent Carolina from taking possession. The puck hopped off the glass and took a fortuitous bounce back to Chimera, who gained the puck in the circle, and used a quick release to go top corner far side on Ward to tie the game at two.

"Those [goals] are huge, especially in the last minute of the second period, to get the goals," Chimera said. "Going [into the third period] 2-2 is a lot different than going in down 2-1."

Tags: Cal Clutterbuck, Jason Chimera
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 (Jerome Miron)
(Jerome Miron)

Josh Ho-Sang continued to make an impact on Tuesday night, as he helped the Islanders back from the brick in their 3-2 come-from-behind win against the Hurricanes.

With just over a minute left in the second period and the Isles trailed 2-0, Nikolay Kulemin took a shot that was blocked in front. The puck redirected right onto Ho-Sang's stick blade in the near circle, and Ho-Sang whistled a wrister top shelf past Cam Ward to pull the Isles within one.

Then in overtime, Ho-Sang skated the puck through the neutral zone and into the Hurricanes' zone and executed a slick drop pass to John Tavares. With space, Tavares ripped a wrister past Ward to give the Isles a 3-2 victory.

Tags: John Tavares, Nikolay Kulemin
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Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; Carolina Hurricanes goalie Cam Ward (30) stops a shot against New York Islanders forward Ryan Strome (18) and forward Anders Lee (27) during the second period at PNC Arena.  (James Guillory (USA Today))
Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; Carolina Hurricanes goalie Cam Ward (30) stops a shot against New York Islanders forward Ryan Strome (18) and forward Anders Lee (27) during the second period at PNC Arena. (James Guillory (USA Today))

John Tavares scored 34 seconds into overtime, and the New York Islanders beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 on Tuesday night.

Joshua Ho-Sang and Jason Chimera scored in the final 65 seconds of the second period to help the Islanders erase a 2-0 deficit and eventually claim what interim coach Doug Weight called a must-win game.

Tavares' winner was set up by Ho-Sang's takeaway at center ice. Ho-Sang brought the puck across the blue line and fed a drop pass to Tavares, who snapped it past Cam Ward.

Thomas Greiss made 30 saves one night after allowing four goals on 16 shots in relief during an 8-4 loss to the Hurricanes at home. Ward, who also gave up four goals in that game, made 31 saves for Carolina. >> Read more...

Tags: John Tavares
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New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

The Islanders, home in Brooklyn for the first time in three weeks and off the heels of a franchise record nine-game road trip where they went 5-3-1, struggled mightily Monday night in an 8-4 blowout loss to the Hurricanes in what could have been considered a must-win game.

With a record of 3-4-1 over their last eight games, having allowed 25 goals in those losses, it's obviously not the optimum time to go into a slump, clinging to the playoff race by a thread -- one point behind the Maple Leafs, but having played one more game. 

"We have to play a lot harder than we did tonight. Execute at a much higher level. Disappointing at this point in the season," captain John Tavares said in the locker room after the game as the team hustled to beat the impending Nor'Easter and catch a flight to Carolina for the rematch Tuesday night.

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, John Tavares, Thomas Greiss, Travis Hamonic
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New York Islanders goalie Jean-Francois Berube makes a pad save against the Colorado Avalanche during the first period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Islanders goalie Jean-Francois Berube makes a pad save against the Colorado Avalanche during the first period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

Jean-Francois Berube and Thomas Greiss both allowed four goals as the New York Islanders lost to the Carolina Hurricanes, 8-4, on Monday at Barclays Center. >> Read more


First period:

  • 9:11 NYI Ryan Strome; Assists: Andrew Ladd, Thomas Hickey
  • 14:14 CAR Jaccob Slavin; Assists: Elias Lindholm, Victor Rask
  • 14:40 CAR Joakim Nordstrom; Assists: Lee Stempniak, Slavin
  • 17:32 NYI Stephen Gionta; Assists: Cal Clutterbuck, Nikolay Kulemin 

Second period:

  • 2:43 NYI Calvin de Haan; Assists: Joshua Ho-Sang, Hickey
  • 6:51 CAR Justin Faulk; Assists: Jordan Staal, Noah Hanifin
  • 8:02 CAR Jeff Skinner; Assists: Elias Lindholm, Matt Tennyson
  • 8:58 CAR Faulk; Assists: Noah Hanifin, Patrick Brown
  • 11:45 CAR Slavin (short handed)
  • 13:50 NYI Ho-Sang; Assist: Anthony Beauvillier

Third period:

  • 3:43 CAR Skinner (Penalty Shot)
  • 10:57 CAR Slavin; Assists: Teuvo Teravainen, Staal
Tags: Andrew Ladd, Cal Clutterbuck, Calvin De Haan, Carolina Hurricanes, Nikolay Kulemin, Ryan Strome, Stephen Gionta, Thomas Greiss, Thomas Hickey
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